Good Opening Sentences For Essays

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Since the dawn of man, writing has been used to communicate ideas.

In academic settings, ideas are typically communicated using formal types of writing such as essays.

At least, not if you’re a novelist, short story writer, journalist, or even a blogger. It’s something we don’t talk about very often because it seems somehow petty.

It’s not something that’s likely to lose you marks.

Most academic essays contain an introductory paragraph, which includes a thesis.

A preliminary explanation prefixed to or included in a book or other writing; the part of a book which leads up to the subject treated, or explains the author’s design or purpose.It’s easy to think the introduction or even the first (or final) sentence has to summarise the entire content of the essay: the argument, the evidence and the caveats. It’s no bad thing for the introduction to include a sentence (probably the last rather than first) that sums up the fundamental point you want to make, but that’s not the same as summarising everything you have to say.A good trick for getting used to doing this is the old one of trying to put across your main point in a tweet or on a post-it note.Also, the corresponding part of a speech, lecture, etc.”Michigan State University student Sally used to have a lot of difficulty writing introductions.Once she had suffered through writing dozens of painful introductions, she decided to look up some tips on how to introduce your essay, and after that she got a lot better. Because the introduction is the first portion of your essay that the reader encounters, the stakes are fairly high for your introduction to be successful.That might sound obvious, but striking a balance between the general and the specific is a constant struggle in writing History at all levels, from the student essay to the professor’s tome.Introductions and conclusions are the easiest places in an essay to drift off-topic when trying to put your own topic within a bigger picture.If the main point you want to make hasn’t changed at all while you’ve been working on your essay, it suggests you haven’t learnt much.This may mean bigger changes to other parts of your introductory paragraph than the opening sentence, but it’s no bad thing to come back to it once the whole essay is written.The advice you get from tutors will probably focus instead on the reading you’ve brought in, the evidence you’ve assembled and the argument you present.Those are things you’ll be penalised for getting wrong.


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